Buzzflash editorializes, "So this, in summary, is what happened: The Bush Cartel Ministry of Truth heard that a young blonde female soldier was severely injured and they made up a heroic story about her, as part of their ongoing Iraq-war attempt to manipulate American public opinion. And what does Jessica Lynch do? She has the nerve to toss out the script the propagandists wrote for her. She has the audacity to speak for herself. She has the American heartland respect for the truth. She became a hero, in an entirely different role than the Bush Cartel wrote for her.
Frank Rich writes, "Ah, the dazzling pyrotechnics of 'shock and awe.' The finality of the toppling of Saddam Hussein's statue. The thrill of that re-enactment of 'Top Gun.' The sense of closure provided by the banner reading 'Mission Accomplished.' Like all wars of the TV age, the war in Iraq is not just a clash of armies, but a succession of iconic images. Those who control the images, and the narratives they encapsulate, control history. At least until a new reality crashes in. ...
"Former prisoner of war Jessica Lynch said the U.S. military was wrong to manipulate the story of her dramatic rescue and should not have filmed it in the first place. ...
In her first significant public interview, Private Jessica Lynch has debunked many of the official stories told by the U.S. military about her personal heroics, abuse at the hands of Iraqis, and rescue. "It hurt in a way that people would make up stories that they had no truth about," Lynch said, adding that it bothered her that "they used me as a way to symbolize all this stuff.
The New York Times' Nicolas Kristof writes, "Ultimately, Saddam's rule collapsed in part because he couldn't read Iraq and made decisions based on hubris and bad information. These days, President Bush and his aides are having the same problem. Critics complain that they lied to the American public about how difficult the war would be, but I fear the critics are wrong: they didn't just fool us -- they also fooled themselves. Evidence suggests that Mr. Bush and Dick Cheney may have actually believed that our troops would be, as Mr.
The Internet Archive has unearthed a U.S. military training film from 1968 showing psychological operations (psyops) in a mythical country called "Hostland," where U.S. advisors want help the host government gain the support of its population. "Psychologically, the military in every country in the world represents government authority," it explains as it shows images of a gray-haired diplomat meeting with generals. "As promised by the ambassador, a team of military advisors arrives in Hostland," the film continues.
Retired U.S. Air Force Colonel Sam Gardiner, a war gamer who has taught strategy and military operations at the National War College, has produced an analysis which suggests that the White House and Pentagon made up or distorted more than 50 news stories related to the war in Iraq. "It was not bad intelligence," Gardiner says. "It was much more. It was an orchestrated effort. It began before the war, was a major effort during the war and continues as post-conflict distortions. ... It was not just the Pentagon.
"The U.S. government has launched a 'good news' offensive in Iraq, and a couple of Baghdad street kids, peddlers of soda pop, have been recruited for the first wave of attack," reports Charles J. Hanley. "On a two-day visit, U.S. Commerce Secretary Don Evans said thousands of new businesses have sprung up here since the war, and gave an example of new entrepreneurship: two boys he spotted by the road selling soft drinks to Baghdad's parched drivers." As in past wars, "the government has unleashed a flood of news releases promoting the U.S.